Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe, with Moldova to its west and the Black Sea to its south.
The nation has had a volatile relationship with eastern neighbour Russia since Ukraine regained independence during the collapse of the USSR in 1991. Most notably, in 2014 the region of Crimea was annexed by the Russian state, a source of lasting tension in the region.
The nation’s capital and largest city is Kiev, based in central Ukraine on the Dnieper river. The Taras Shevchenko University is in the city, a renowned research centre. Further to the east is the National University of Kharkiv, based in the city of the same name. Established in 1804, this is the second oldest university in Ukraine and was once one of the most highly regarded universities in the Russian Empire.
Culturally Ukraine is known for examples of fine architecture, such as the St. Michael’s Golden Monastery in Kiev, and for its cooking of local dishes like borscht and chicken kiev, believed to be named after the city. Weddings are huge events in the country, and the celebrations can go on for weeks.
Some of the well-known people from Ukraine are the footballer Andriy Shevchenko, liberal president Yulia Tymoshenko, and Hollywood actresses Mila Kunis and Milla Jovovich.